Cement is an input. You can’t eat or drink it. On its own it’s useless. So as a government, if you decide to have a cement policy, the biggest mistake you can make is to set your success benchmark simply as increasing the amount of cement produced. But this is what Nigeria did
If you’re going to have a policy supporting the production of an input, the only sensible way to measure the success of that policy is to measure the things that that input goes into.
Can African countries not commit some funding to secure vaccines? What is more important to spend money? For once the media should stop playing up these sob stories that infantilise African countries. It’s not helpful
As far as I’m concerned, I’ve set the target for Nigeria at $150m and not a dollar less. After Nigeria has committed that amount of funding, then I will he happy to hear stories about rich countries not helping. Until then, spare me these stories
Again I ask, what is more important than committing some funds to vaccinate *your own* citizens in a global pandemic? What else is a higher priority than this? If Nigeria cannot shake bodi and drop $150m, please close down the government and send everyone home
Here’s something that illustrates a depressing reality about economic policy making in Nigeria - some ideas are so pervasive across the Nigerian elite that no matter who you elect, they just won’t change
Aganga’s auto policy is a perfect example of this. A completely nonsensical policy that was doomed to failure the moment it appeared in his head. Yet he went ahead with it with so much energy and conviction
This idea that if you simply lock up Nigeria, whatever it is that was being imported will magically start being produced in Nigeria. So simple, so seductive, so stupid. That was the auto policy did
After Biden took the lead in GA, all of my Nigerian timeline was taken over by stories of the role Stacy Abrams played in making that happen particularly with her Fair Fight PAC
But I did not see a single comment on the economic context in which she made that happen. Here it is - the GDP of the state of GA - at $540bn - is almost 40% bigger than Nigeria’s. To add insult to injury, there are less than 11 million people there
The Great Ali Kwara is dead. I came across his story when I used to do the daily paper review and I immediately installed myself as the Chairman of the Ali Kwara Appreciation Society leadership.ng/pmb-mourns-leg…
This link has some of the stories I shared going back to 2013. Completely bizarre of course but perfectly normal in Nigeria twitter.com/search?q=doubl…
Basically, state governors and the police used to hire the guy to go help them catch some thieves or castle rustlers. He apparently had the best charms in town and he always delivered often in spectacular fashion
This idea all over my TL that the violence at the protests is sponsored by the govt is just depressing. Even in the U.K. with the mildest police, violence broke out to say nothing of Chicago or New York. Come on guys
The key ingredient is able bodied young men with nothing but time on their hands. And no country in the world has more of that constituency than Nigeria. Govt or no govt instigation, you should be surprised if protests *don’t* degenerate in this way.
I hope this incredible opportunity to drive real change is not now lost. Protests are a powerful tool in a democracy but they’re one of many tools to drive change. They should lead to a ferment of ideas for reform that lead to real change
What if you focused on Nigerian Police Colleges for overhaul? Potentially, you can start seeing results in under 2 years and it will cost almost nothing #EndSARS
How does one become a Nigerian Police officer? The ‘training’ can be as little as 6 months. And whatever it is they are teaching them is obviously not very useful #EndSARS
There are only 4 Police Colleges (?) [Ikeja, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Oji-River]. What if you made a demand for an overhaul of the curriculum? Do you think they’re taught things like de-escalation or community relations?
By the way this option has a precedent. When Tafa Balogun became IG, he set up a handpicked team that went around raiding other police checkpoints (often with cameras). They would search the pockets of the police officers there and if they found money, arrest them
It was quite fun and it did work for a while. Look, I know Tafa Balogun eventually went to prison for stealing money meant for police salaries and pensions but we are discussing options here so let’s focus please
This leads me to a funny story I may have shared before but is worth sharing again. During this period I was in University in Nigeria. One way the police reacted to Tafa’s regime was to constantly keep their bribes in a can or box somewhere away from them. Never in their pockets
So how do you actually end SARS? This a LOT harder than people think and will involve an incredible amount of work. But these protests have presented an opportunity to get it done that is better than previous opportunities
Again, SARS is the textbook definition of a rogue unit. It ought to be painfully clear to anyone watching this drama that the Inspector General of Police has zero control over them. He doesn’t even know how many of his men are in SARS
Not long after the IG announced he was ‘replacing’ SARS with the brand new never before seen SWAT, internet archaeologists dug up these
First of all, if you are a sadist and want to design a police unit that is unaccountable and operates with impunity, you will struggle to come up with anything worse than SARS.
First one - count the number of testimonies of people’s encounters with SARS and see how many times people say they were not even sure if it was Police or Armed Robbers. They wear ripped jeans and have NO name badges or numbers. But this isn’t even the worst part
So there’s now something of a challenge with #EndSARS. I’m a bit conflicted because, strictly speaking, disbanding and redeploying the SARS men is the only thing can *technically* be done
This is because the SARS guys are regular police officers who get posted to the SARS unit (often after paying bribes to get deployed there). No one joins SARS directly. And you can’t fire all police officers who are in SARS. Tricky
But this doesn’t mean disbanding is of no effect. It has been centuries since Thucydides gave us the insight that when in a group, humans often behave more discreditably than they would ordinarily do as individuals
2 white dudes with nothing but an interesting idea set out for Nigeria. After meeting with frustration and only a commissioner they decided to try out Ghana where they had a better reception up to VP level.
YET NIGERIANS MADE THE LOUDEST NOISE ABOUT IT ON THIS APP. I'M ANGRY!
I'm still upset and I can't let this matter go. I am sorry
Do you know the number of actual investments that started off in Nigeria and ended up in Ghana simply because Ghanaians are nicer and friendlier people with a better business environment? Let me give you one - Movenpick Hotel Accra
Let’s not get carried away here. There is a way to meet people in high places in places like Nigeria and Ghana. It is annoying, unfair but it ‘works’ and everyone plays the game.
What is unusual, and to me remarkable, is that this guy had none of the requirements and got past it. You’ll say it’s because he’s white but you’ll also say the same thing if he was *anything* other than a local. Diaspora, black foreigner etc
I really enjoy this kind of logic. Basically, there can be no disproportionate impact where everyone is black. As Nigerians like to say - sense won't kill you
Come closer let me whisper something - regardless of how the govt responded (or not), the corona outcome has been pretty much the same across sub-saharan Africa. Pick any random SSA country and look at their stats. Pretty much the same
And it’s not a stat problem either. There is no way to hide people dying in large numbers. It simply hasn’t happened. The answer is obviously elsewhere but the Afreekah People already have it
The discovery of crude oil
The discovery of the uses of crude oil
The discovery of crude oil refining
The discovery of the exploration of crude oil
Nigeria was not present for any of these things. Nigeria entered the group chat *after* they happened
So you get a situation where all of a sudden you are awash with dollars when people have found crude oil, found uses for it, found how to refine it, found how to explore it - and then they want plenty of the stuff which you just happen to have
Ok, thread on Burna's new song as promised. Here's the section on Mungo Park (the annotation captures why he wrote it). Full lyrics here genius.com/20582651
It's an interesting point that raises some interesting questions - Dr. Park died more than 200 years ago but I was definitely taught that he discovered the River Niger in school in Nigeria in the 1980s/90s. How come?
One of the things I’ve always found interesting but no one seems to talk about(?) is how much South Africa’s politics looks like China’s to an outside observer like me. Like the way they organise leadership posts into ANC etc - more than a whiff of CCP
Anyway, it’s even more interesting to see that it actually goes beyond just how they are organised. What Cyril just said there is pretty much word for word how the CCP views its mission - secure the party first and China will be secure. The genius is to make it a fait accompli
There was a brief moment when ‘defund the police’ was an interesting idea. Until The People Who Don’t Know When To Stop™️ entered the group chat and said, akshually, we really really want to defund the police nytimes.com/2020/08/10/nyr…
As I said, from my own little experience here in the U.K., there’s a lot of stuff that police are forced to do that they don’t really want to do. ‘Defund the Police’ was an eye catching way to talk about those issues and maybe get consensus around them. But here we are
Anyway, none of what is in that article is new. As I’ve been telling people for years - read Jill Leovy’s Ghettoside. It’s all in there.